6 Best Flat Irons for Black Hair – (Reviews & Buying Guide 2019)

Best Flat Iron for Black HairWhether your hair is natural or has been chemically treated, we’ll give you some great tips for finding the best flat iron for black hair to make your hair shiny, strong, and gorgeous.

African American or black hair has a thicker and coarser texture. The curls contained within each strand are also tighter and kinkier, and therefore easily form frizz.

You already know that it takes a great time and care to make your hair look exactly how you want, so it’s important to invest in just the right hair straightener for the job.

The last thing you would ever want is to spend hours and hours on your style only to be left with lackluster results.

Take our word and research for it, these are the reviews of flat irons great for African American hair.


ghd Professional Original 1-Inch Styler

GHD Professional Original Straightener

  • Price : $$$
  • Plate Material : Aluminum plates
  • Plate Width : 1″
  • Maximum Heat: 365°F
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HSI Professional Ionic Flat Iron Hair Straightener

HSI Professional Ionic Flat Iron Hair Straightener

  • Price : $$
  • Plate Material : Ceramic/tourmaline ion plates
  • Plate Width : 1-1/4″
  • Maximum Heat : 450°F
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Paul Mitchell Neuro Smooth Flat Iron

  • Price : $$
  • Plate Material : Durable titanium plates
  • Plate Width : 1″
  • Maximum Heat : 450°F
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BIO IONIC Onepass Straightening Iron

Bio Ionic OnePass Straightening Iron

  • Price : $$$
  • Plate Material : OnePass Iron plates
  • Plate Width : 1″
  • Maximum Heat : 400°F
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New - Redken &Rowenta Steam Infused Hair Straightener

Redken &Rowenta Steam Infused Hair Straightener

  • Price: $$
  • Plate Material : Solid aluminum plates
  • Plate Width : 1″
  • Heat Setting : 410°F
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Best Flat Iron for African American Hair Reviews

1. GHD Professional Original Straightener

This straightener is the right choice for naturally dry hair. The classic gold ceramic plates have aluminum added for reduced static, making is especially best for dry climates.

The one-inch plates suit all lengths of hair, so if you’re not sure just which size to go with for black hair, start with this flat iron.

It features automatic sleep mode with a quick heat recovery for ease of bouncing from blowout to straightening and back again.

Do you travel regularly? The last thing you want to do is find a new flat iron in unfamiliar territory. The universal voltage and plate guard are perfect for girls on the go.

For peace of mind in durability, the flat iron comes with a two-year warranty.

Read more: GHD flat iron reviews

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2. HSI Professional Ionic Flat Iron Hair Straightener

Speaking of treatments, have you tried argan oil? If not, you simply must. It is a miracle oil for taming frizz and preventing damage. And it’s included with this flat iron. What a bonus!

The 1 ¼ inch plates are the perfect combination of ceramic and tourmaline with advanced infrared heat that comes in a flash, practically right after you plug the flat iron in.

It reaches super high temps up to 450F for one pass through each section of hair, with an LCD control on the inside handle.

At 1.7 pounds, the flat iron is a bit heavier but more sturdy and has an extra long cord and dual voltage.

Read more about HSI Flat Irons

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3. Paul Mitchell Neuro Smooth Flat Iron

Have you ever been late for work but you can’t get ready fast enough because your flat iron is taking eons to heat up? Well, say goodbye to those irritating moments of waiting with the new Paul Mitchell Neuro smooth flat iron.

It takes less than a minute to heat up. With its 1.25-inch isotherm titanium plates, you can have complete straightening in one pass. The use of titanium makes the iron lighter yet just as strong as steel. The lightweight ensures that you can style your hair comfortably even for long periods.

The titanium plates also let you use your products without fear of corrosion.

The button setup is intuitive and very easy to use. A cool feature on the iron is that you can set the temperature to actual degrees! (No more abstract high or low). Its Smartsense microchip ensures that it produces even heat and also keeps an eye on that high heat, so you don’t burn those luscious locks. It glides effortlessly and keeps hair straight even in humid weather, leaving you with a straight and shiny finish.The product comes with a Two-year warranty.

Read more: Paul Mitchell flat iron reviews

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4. Bio Ionic OnePass Straightening Iron

Don’t you just hate when you have to go back and redo a portion of hair that you had just straightened? This flat iron is your best solution.

Its plates are made up of ceramic which is known to be gentler on hair and a set of silicone speed strips. The ceramic plates give off negative ions which result in a smoother, glossier finish.

The silicone strips found on one plate ensure that you take less time passing through a section of hair while providing just the right amount of tension. The pieces also make sure that your hair stays in place while you straighten it while being smooth enough not to snag or pull at your hair. A knob from 240F-400F controls the temperature. Along with an on-off button, the handle has grooved indentations for a firmer grip especially for those hard to reach areas like the back of your head. The extra-long cord, which swivels 360 degrees, comes in handy especially when the outlet is not in a favorable position.

This amazing bio ionic straightener comes with a whopping five- year warranty!

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5. Redken &Rowenta Steam Infused Hair Straightener

New - Redken &Rowenta Steam Infused Hair StraightenerIt is the best iron for those who need straightening on a daily basis. The hair straightener’s steam aspect makes it unique. The steam is used to straighten hair instead of the usual ceramic or tourmaline plates and is the gentlest method on hair. The double-edged technology on the plates allows for continuous flow of steam and instant heating.

The steam straightener makes the hair silky smooth while the anodized plates give it extra shine. Traditional irons often leave the hair a bit rough and dry due to the heat, and this straightener allows you to straighten your hair while keeping it soft and moist. It makes the hair healthier by conditioning it with the steam.

The adjustable comb that comes with the iron helps to eliminate one of the processes that occur after straightening. This feature is an added advantage for people with thick and coarse hair that is often hard to comb after using a flat iron. The comb can be removed if you want to straighten your hair.

The straightener has a swivel cord and adjustable temperature that ranges between 340-410degrees. The iron straightens out tight hair even on the lowest setting.

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6. Onei MK-I Halo Ceramic Flat Iron

You’ve tried it all with your hair – cuts, colors, and treatments. The worst thing when putting the finishing touches on your brand new style is to ruin all that hard work and expensive treatment with a bad hair straightener.

Onei is also the right flat iron for chemically treated hair. The floating plates have a slightly larger elliptical-shaped barrel and are multi-coated (and therefore multiple layers), which is the best type of ceramic flat iron.

It ranges from a low 140F to a high 450F with a quick digital adjustment in between.

This is one of the best hair straighteners because of its versatility. You can switch heat settings of the flat iron between longer hair in the back and those tougher-to-style short sections at the front.

It’s ultra lightweight with an ergonomic handle that will let you comfortably style, no matter how long it takes.

The flat iron has dual voltage, a 30-minute auto shut off, and generous 4-year warranty.

Everyone, regardless of treatment, will be left with super silky and shiny results.

What Is The Natural Hair Type?

Before you embark on this journey of choosing a flat iron, make sure you know what your hair type is. Black hair types often range from the distinct loopy type 3 to the kinkier type 4.

If your hair consists of a type that has an excellent texture and is very soft, then you belong to the type 3 group. This hair is often very fine, and volume is probably not a word you would use to describe it. A great tip for this kind of hair is to prop it after styling to give it more volume. Choose a straightener that can create waves or curls to give it a bouncier feel. Styling this hair bone straight might leave your head looking like you have a mop on your head. Use lightweight oils such as jojoba and tea tree oils. Heavier oils will weigh down the curls and leave your hair limp and lifeless.

To make sure your curls are better defined, twirl small sections of hair on your finger and use pomades for ponytails or updos.

The other more common type of black hair is type 4.This one is more on the kinkier side. It consists of very tight coils. It often gets nappy and has little definition. This is probably the hair type that is most difficult to straighten. It is very thick and coarse. Due to its z- like bends sebum (natural oil produced by your scalp) doesn’t flow well down the hair strand leaving the ends somewhat dry. Before straightening type 4 hair make sure to use a sulfate free shampoo and deep condition to lock in plenty of moisture.

Heavier oils and gels are more suitable for this type to give a firm hold. This hair can be straightened completely and need no propping as it is already very full.

How to Determine Your Natural Hair Type?

One head of hair may contain multiple types. Here are some key pointers which can help you classify your hair;

  1. The level of moisture retaining capacity
  2. Whether it is curled or coiled
  3. The intensity of shrinkage
  4. The size of curls
  5. The shape of curls
  6. The volume of your hair

These six key points will not only help you classify your hair type, but they will also help you understand your hair and become more sensitive and probably pay more attention to the dos and don ts of your particular hair type. However, overdoing things such as conditioning, excessive oils and over manipulation will lead to disastrous results which will change your natural hair type. This situation is often caused by a build-up of products which prevent absorption of essential nutrients by the hair follicles.

Take care not to use too much heat on your softer parts. Contrary to popular belief black hair is the weakest type. Don’t let its fullness or thickness fool you the individual strands are very feeble and its many bends make it easy to break. Preferably use minimal heat when straightening your hair. Misuse of heat appliances on your locks may lead to heat damage, especially to your roots.

You don’t want to have ends that look relaxed and natural roots.

The versatility of black hair is its ability to switch from your gravity-defying afros to your straightened hair that often leaves people amazed at its length. Let’s make sure you keep this superpower by taking care of your strands. Remember moisture is essential! Lock it in!

Tips & Tricks on Straightening Natural Hair

Straightening African American Hair with flat ironFor your flat iron, there are a few key qualities you definitely won’t want to skimp on. Firsts are reliability and durability.

You certainly don’t want to waste your time (or money) trying to find a new hair straightener every year, so a well-made flat iron that will stick with you for years to come is a must.

Second is high heat. Reducing the amount of damage to your delicate hair is crucial. The fewer number of passes you make through each section, the better. This can only come from high heat.

And lastly, invest in the most up-to-date technology including infrared and negative ion-emitting flat irons. These are proved to reduce frizz and come in the form of ceramic, tourmaline, titanium, or a combination of these.

The size of your flat iron itself will depend on the length of your hair. For short hair, use smaller. For long hair, choose larger. It’s as simple as that.

how-to-flat-iron-natural-hairWhen deciding how to flat iron natural hair, the key is finding quality products.

Make sure that you choose the very best straightener, shampoo, conditioner, and oil to lock in as much moisture as possible.

Choose products that have heat-protecting qualities.

First, shampoo thoroughly and wash out.

Apply a leave-in conditioner followed by oil.

When your hair is prepped properly, you’ll be ready to straighten.

Black Hair Straightening Tips

When deciding how to flat iron natural hair, the key is finding quality products.

Make sure that you choose the very best straightener, shampoo, conditioner, and oil to lock in as much moisture as possible.

Choose products that have heat-protecting qualities. Here is a guide on how to prepare your hair for straightening.

  1. Shampoo and condition hair
    It’s important always to start with a clean head of hair. Flat ironing hair with products piled up is just baking them in more and could cause more harm than good. Shampoo your hair using a mild product that doesn’t have harsh chemicals. The use of a gentle shampoo will cleanse the hair and scalp without stripping it of its natural oils. Condition the hair with a quality conditioner that will give enough slip to help detangle the curls. After rinsing the hair dry by patting with a clean old cotton t-shirt to prevent breakage.
  2. Sectioning
    Always work on your hair in sections. Curly hair easily tangles up, and the kinks and coils get caught up in each other. It’s much easier and more convenient to work in small portions. Part your hair using a tail comb and make sure that every section is well moisturized and completely detangled.
  3. Heat Protectant
    Kinky hair is prone to drying out easily. To prevent heat damage during straightening, you need to ensure your locks are well moisturized and that moisture is sealed in. Apply a leave-in conditioner then seal in the moisture using any light oil. Healthy oils that can be used are olive oil, Shea butter or coconut oil. Shea butter is a great heat protectant just makes sure to warm it in the microwave or a bowl of hot water to melt it from its solid form before applying to your hair. Depending on your hair type you might just need a leave-in conditioner and a heat protectant spray. If you chose to use a heat protectant chose one that doesn’t have a lot of alcohol content. Alcohol-based heat protectants will dry out your hair so stay away from them.
  4. Only Press Dry Hair
    Make sure you dry your hair before letting any straightener near it lest you face the dreaded sizzle (think, the sound of bacon on a hot skillet).Use a blow dry on low heat or air dry overnight to make sure it dries completely. You could also dry your hair and stretch it out using a non-heat method such as banding or threading to get a head start on the straightening.If your hair is extra dry, you may need to apply more oil as you go. If your oil does not have a heat protectant, then choose a separate spray to spritz before styling to further protect your locks. Now that your hair is moisturized and ready to be straightened here are some tips on how to iron out those kinks.

First of all, there is no one way to straighten your hair. No method can be deemed the gospel when straightening your coils because different hair types have different needs. These are a few guidelines on how to straighten your hair, but you can adjust according to your hair type.

Guidelines On How to Straighten Black Hair in 3 Easy Steps

In Short!

  • Starting underneath and on one side of your hair, use a fine tooth comb to part hair into tiny sections. Really tiny. The best results will come from not overcrowding the flat iron.
  • Secure the rest of your hair up and away from the section about to be straightened.
  • The next trick is to simultaneously use the comb and hair straightener together. Working from root to end, let the comb lead the way and follow immediately behind with your flat iron. Combine as you go will ensure the least amount of snags. As you know by now, the key is to go slow. Not rushing will give you the best results.

How to Maintain Your Flat Iron For A Natural Hair?

Even if you don’t use your flat iron regularly, it still needs to be cleaned. The products you use on your hair and oils will eventually build up on the plates of the iron. Aside from giving an unpleasant view, the buildup can cause damage to your hair and at times split ends. The effects of the accumulation also change how the iron works. It can cause uneven heating or also cause poor straightening.

The following is a short guide on how to clean your flat iron.

  1. Heat the iron slightly: Heat up your iron on the lowest setting it should be warm, not hot.
  2. Unplug the iron: It’s imperative to remove the flat iron from a power source before you begin the cleaning process.
  3. Use lukewarm water: Do not use hot or too cold water. Using a piece of cloth rub the dirt gently using the warm water. Most products will easily slide off.
  4. Clean the sides: Make sure you wipe down the sides of the flat iron to keep it all clean.

If you have some hard to remove buildup, use 70% rubbing alcohol. Pour a little onto a cloth and just rub the flat iron .again all cleaning should be done while the straightener is off.!

Don’t use any other type of alcohol as this one is denatured and not harmful to the appliance.

Another alternative is to buy particular sticks sold in stores that are specially made to clean flat irons. The product will melt on the warm iron but quickly wiped off along with the product build up.

Cleaning your iron makes sure that all your styles are just as fabulous as the first one. It also increases the durability of your iron making sure you don’t have to buy a flat iron every other year.

Check out some of the other amazing products for black hair; Herstyler flat irons, and GVP straightener reviews!


Best Flat Iron for Black Hair Comparison Chart

PRODUCTPRICEPlate MaterialPlate WidthMaximum Heat
GHD Professional Original Straightener
$$$Aluminum 1 inch365°F
Onei MK-I Halo Ceramic Flat Iron
$$Ceramic1 inch450°F
HSI Professional Ionic Flat Iron Hair Straightener
$$ Ceramic/tourmaline1-1/4 Inch450°F
Paul Mitchell Neuro Smooth Flat Iron
$$Durable titanium plates1 Inch450°F
Bio Ionic OnePass straightening iron
$$$OnePass Iron plates1 Inch400°F
Redken &Rowenta Steam Infused Hair Straightener
$$Solid aluminum plates1 Inch400°F


Bottom Line

When trying to find the right flat iron for African American hair, you must know your hair and its needs. Maybe even have a chat with your stylist. Think about what is most important to you. Do you need heat that varies for different sections of your hair?

Maybe you’re trying to grow your hair out, so a medium plate size is best. Or maybe you need that extra boost of shine for dryness. You know your hair best, so it’s not a decision to make quickly.

Take the time to find the best flat iron for natural hair just like you take the time to create the perfect look.

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